When I step into a piercing and/or tattoo shop, I expect it to be BEYOND clean. That includes use of all the usual sterilization equipment, single-use needles, and protective gloves. But what if you found yourself in a tattoo shop filled with over 4,000 types of toxins in the air? Would you still want to have an open wound created in this environment, or would you opt for a cleaner establishment? Although safety and health are sometimes disregarded by extreme modifiers, those on the search for a simple lip piercing or a tattoo should be wary of a shop that subjects them to easily-avoidable health risks. One of these risks is cigarette smoke, which does indeed contain over 4,000 toxins.
The reason for my interest in the subject of cigarette smoking in tattoo and piercing shops is a place in Tel Aviv, Israel called Kipod. Kipod (which is Hebrew for "porcupine" - cute, no?) is a joint coffee shop and tattoo/piercing parlor. Sounds like a great hangout for someone like myself, who loves both coffee and body modification. But when I researched Kipod a bit on the Internet, I found some slightly disturbing photos from its grand opening party.
Maybe it’s because I’m a smoker myself, and not used to smoking indoors, but the sight of people smoking cigarettes in a tattoo shop bothered me quite a bit. Although smoking inside is quite the pleasure for most smokers, I understand that some people just hate the lingering smell and the health risks so it isn’t polite to smoke in public places. I also realize that cigarettes are a part of the culture in many countries, and that smoking indoors is considered completely normal, but a tattoo shop isn’t just any normal establishment. I can’t help but feel that smoking in what’s supposed to be a sterile environment is never appropriate, however pleasurable it might be. Would you trust a doctor who allowed smoking in his office?